Time for one last bit of sunshine in Cyprus
As memories of summer ebb away in northern climes, one of the last places in the south to stay warm is Cyprus – closer to Asia and even Africa than to mainland Europe. Come here now to enjoy a low season that still offers plent y of blue sky.
WALK IN DIVINE FOOTSTEPS Temperatures on the coast stay in the high teens or low twenties well into November, and while that may not be beach weather for ever yone, it’s ideal for hikes that would be a sun-baked ordeal in summer. In the barely tamed Akamas Peninsula at Cyprus’ western tip, you can tap into Greek mythology on the Aphrodite Trail – a loop of three to four hours that takes in coastal views from on high (pictured left). It starts from the spring reputed to be the bathing spot of the goddess of love; her ill-fated lover is remembered in the Adonis Trail, which runs inland (visitpafos.org.cy/off- the - beaten - track). FEEL FRESH AGAIN By November, the island’s plant life will be breathing a sigh of relief at the end of the thirsty period. Just south of the Akamas Peninsula, a 40 -minute trail through the Avgas Gorge starts amid thick streamside vegetation home to tree frogs, and continues as the cliffs loom higher on either side. GET PURPOSEFULLY LOST The Troödos Mountains, which reach as high as 1,952m, experience a more classic kind of autumn, with forest carpets of ochre - coloured leaves. It’s a region of winding roads best explored by car, to take in mountain villages, wineries such as Kyperounda, and painted churches from the Byzantine era – 10 of which are on the Unesco World Heritage list. FIND THE IDEAL HIDEAWAY Many hotels and other visitor- centred businesses start to close for the winter at the end of October, but one great place that stays open year-round is Apokr yfo Guesthouse, in the village of Lofou in the foothills of the Troödos. The name of this renovated quartet of old stone houses literally means ‘hidden away’ in Greek (from £155; apokr yfo.com).